Awesome safety app for cyclists

Real-time tracking app lets family and friends track rider en route

There are a million apps out there for today’s cyclist to peruse, but one in particular just came out, and is definitely worth sharing. “RoadID” is what it’s called, and while you might’ve heard that name before, its latest iteration is worth sharing because it can be used as a means of letting friends and family track a cyclist’s progress in real time.

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What’s more, if the cyclist stops moving for more than five minutes, a notification is sent to that friend / family member, alerting them that the rider might be in trouble.

Also worth noting, the app has a lock screen that displays all vital information about the cyclist for first responders to review when they arrive at the scene (hopefully it never has to be used). Information displayed includes the user’s name, city and state, three emergency contacts, and important medical information (e.g. allergies, medical history, blood type, etc.)

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Obviously, the app can be used for other activities like running, walking, or hiking — basically anything you can take your Bluetooth portable speaker with you. The way the user’s friends and family members can view the status of the cyclist / road warrior is via link, which can be sent by email or text prior to hitting the road.

Beyond emergency situations, the app also makes it easy for riders to track each other down for a meet-up on long rides. So it’s not all doom-and-gloom—it can also be used for on-the-fly get-togethers.

RoadID is free, and can be downloaded via the Apple store.

New app will prevent distracted users from getting hit by a car, eaten by a dinosaur, etc.

Safety app will use audio intelligence software to protect users

Look — we want you to enjoy our Bluetooth portable speakers, but we don’t want you to get so distracted by all of their audio awesomeness, or so involved in the music thumping in your headphones, that you wind up getting hurt.

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That’s why we’re big proponents of the new app that the folks over at One Llama are working on. It’s called “Audio Aware” and in layman’s terms, the program uses audio intelligence software to listen to the world around its user for specific sounds that they might want to be aware of.

Some examples include screeching tires, car horns, screaming voices, roaring dinosaurs, and so on. When a sound matches, the app lets the user know:

When a sufficient match, such as a car horn, is detected, it will cancel any audio you’re hearing and pipe in an amplified version of the sound it’s picking up, or perhaps a cartoon-like version of that sound that is easier to recognize.

Unfortunately, the app only works with headphones and portable speakers that have One Llama technology baked into it. That being the case, people with poor hearing or hearing loss stand to benefit from downloading it in the immediate future. But the company is actively working with developers to expand the app’s capabilities to better “listen” to the world around us using standard audio equipment, so that we can all continue safely listening to our music on our favorite devices.

Google Glass app helps bikers navigate through city without having to pull out their phones

Integration of wearable technology was inevitable

R/GA Prototype Studio has developed a Google Glass app called “NYCycle” specifically for New York City’s Bike share program to help bikers navigate their way through the streets of the city without ever having to pull out their phones as reference for directions.

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Happy Valentine’s Day — Here’s My Heart

Mobile app built for Hallmark holiday walks fine line between creepy and cute

Re:Beat mobile app

You could go with a dozen roses, box of chocolates, awesomely loud portable speaker, or you could go mobile app and download Re:Beat. It records and animates a person’s heartbeat to share with loved ones no matter how far away they might be.

Re:Beat heartbeat screenshot

The app was created by Swedish mobile VoIP service Rebtel and is free on both iOS and Android. The way it works is pretty straightforward: it uses the device’s camera to sense a person’s average heart beat per minute. The user simply presses their finger against the camera and it detects the rate by measuring subtle changes in the user’s finger color.

If the sensor doesn’t work, the user taps the rhythm of their heartbeat against the phone. The screen will then animate the rhythm into a digital beating heart while at the same time vibrating and making sound.

Re:Beat tap screen

When the recording’s ready to go, there are five types of message to choose from, ranging from “I’m just a heartbeat away” to “My heart beats for you”. The message can be sent via Facebook, Twitter, or text message.

Video promo of the app below:

Creepy? Cute? Still need a better idea? Check out the promo we’re running for Valentine’s Day:

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Attention runners: we’ve found you the best music app ever

iOS app called “Cruise Control” adjusts beat of music to help users reach goal

Hot damn — Cruise Control is an awesome running app!

Cruise control app

Available on iOS (for now), the iPhone app adjusts music in a user’s library in real-time to help control one’s running pace. That is, it speeds up / slows down the song to help keep a runner on track with his or her desired pace, heart rate, etc.

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Furthermore, it matches the runner’s pattern, and can synchronize beats with each time the foot touches the ground:

“We call it Cruise Control because it works a lot like cruise control in your car,” explained researchers from the Locomotion Lab at Simon Fraser University, the minds behind the app. “You set your target, and the music will keep adjusting its rhythm, just like the car adjusts its throttle, to get you to your target and keep you there.”

What’s really cool about this app is that it doesn’t necessarily have to work through headphones only: You can pocket the phone and stream the music via Bluetooth through one of our portable speakers while you exercise: The app just needs to be open on the phone, which needs to be on you to detect body motion, rhythm, etc., so that it can collect the data and input it into algorithms that help control the rate and intensity of the music / exercise in real time.

Baby working out

There are four ways to control an exercise with this app, with the “free” option allowing the app to automatically adjust the music to the exercise rhythm it detects through the phone. It can also be set to a target pace, heart rate, or cadence, all three of which will adjust the music accordingly to help the user achieve their goal.

Cruise Control is available through iTunes app store for $4.99.